Eternally online

Eternals Disney Plus release date is way later than you think

Marvel's latest is finally hitting Disney Plus, which could give us an idea of when we can see future features.

Disney+ is now a major player in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. For the first year of its existence it was the streaming destination for MCU movies, but the franchise’s main stage was still the movie theater. The pandemic changed all that. The premiere of the MCU television universe with WandaVision and the move of multiple Marvel movies to paid “Premier Access” meant the “cinema” part of “cinematic universe” took a backseat.

But with Eternals bringing back the theatrical-only release, how long will Marvel’s new movies take to hit Disney+? We may finally have an answer.

When will Eternals be available to stream on Disney Plus?

Eternals’ centuries-spanning love story was unlike anything the MCU has shown before.Marvel Studios

Marvel guaranteed Eternals a 45-day exclusive window in theaters, so the movie won’t hit Disney+ until at least December 20, 2021. However, it looks like Marvel will be making the fans wait a little longer. According to Streaming Guider, Eternals will be available to stream on January 12, 2022.

Considering the film released in theaters in early November, this sets a precedent of about two months. So fans may have to wait longer than expected if they choose to not see Marvel movies in theaters.

What does this mean for the MCU?

With a huge-scale film like Eternals still taking more than two months to hit streaming, fans may need to get used to waiting.Marvel Studios

This may mean Disney+’s time in the spotlight is over. Though original TV series will still premiere on the service, Marvel movies could once again only show up once their theatrical run is complete. While this is great news for those who mourned the loss of the movie theater experience when the pandemic shut down the industry, it’s not good for casual fans.

Ultimately, the MCU is a movie-focused franchise, and many fans say the crowded theater is the intended — and best — way to experience the movies. With movie tickets for upcoming MCU film Spider-Man: No Way Home selling out and even being resold on eBay at a huge markup, movies are once again a big deal.

Hopefully, Marvel can find a good balance between the movie and TV offerings to keep both sectors of fans happy, although that could be difficult to achieve in a world still affected by a global pandemic. Either way, be ready to start shelling out for buckets of popcorn again.

Eternals is now playing in theaters.